Referring to our personal conference of yesterday, you will be perfectly justified, in case you get contact with the kidnappers of the Lindbergh Baby, in agreeing to carry out the terms of the signed statement of Colonel and Mrs. Lindbergh published in the press. The agreed upon money will be paid and nothing concerning the transaction will be given out to the police in case the baby is returned safe and sound.
Hundreds of requests come in every day to Col. Lindbergh for a signed statement authorizing individuals who believe they can get in contact with the people holding the baby to act for the father and mother in making negotiations. Naturally they cannot comply with all of these request and they take the position that their signed statement given out to the press should be sufficient guarantee.
I have conferred with Col. Lindbergh and i know that there is nothing in his attitude in conflict with the views expressed by you in your statement to the press.
[A. J. MacNab, Jr. to Chief Detective Ellis Parker, 3-9-32]
One of my favorite books on the kidnapping is Jones' book , Murder of Justice.
Jones writes about Parker's belief that Wendel was the smartest man he ever encountered. He had a brilliant mind and could absorb anything he studied but his problem was sticking to anything for any length of time.
The first encounter was to Parker's secretary Ann Bading that he had a message for the man who placed the ad in the paper (Condon). To Parker he insisted he knew who the kidnappers were and wanted to talk to Parker about it. Wendel does not say he has contacted the kidnappers but only he knows he they were.
All the other fakes had to put themselves in the limelight in order to benefit themselves and they attempted to do so. Wendel was different.
Why would Wendel say the baby was alive? Maybe because that was the original plan. Why would he be so bold to say the kidnapper went out the front door?
Wendel has only been investigated in light of the fake confession to Parker or his ability to be the actual kidnapper. I think I would have taken the approach maybe he did know who the kidnappers were.
Anyway Jones' theory of the kidnapping is not bad other than he doesn't believe Hauptmann is involved at all. Matter in fact he doesn't name who went up the ladder. (page 1151 in his book).
Wendel wanted Parker to think he kidnapped the child. He came out from a meeting with him and announced to his ride that "they" think I kidnapped the Lindbergh child....when no such accusation had been made. He was attempting to further that belief.
There was some investigation done after Wilentz sprung Wendel...but by Gov. Hoffman's people. The NJSP were investigating too but mostly on behalf of Wilentz's efforts. It's all so damn interesting to see this power struggle between the Governor, the State Police, and the AG develop then twist and turn.
Trust me when I say that Wendel had threatened to stab Wilentz in the back. Never did, but seriously thought about it.
What really happened to Ellis Parker, the small-town detective with the world-wide reputation? In his forty-four years as Chief of Detectives of Burlington County, New Jersey, Ellis Parker became known as the greatest detective in America.
Personally I never dropped the possibility Wendel as out of the picture. If there was a conspiracy beyond Hauptmann and Fisch I often considered the whats ifs on Wendel. If he had the brass to go to Capone to sell his hoax invention I wonder what else. According to Behn there is a liklihood he knew Fisch. Wendel seemed he wanted to get close to the case and for what? Do we have all Parker's notes? I think John R said much of it was lost.
Wendel was someone who was very smart but used his talents to swindle instead. John R was the first to point out to me that he used some arguments in his lawsuit that were in his confession. Looking at it through this lens - it proves, at least those parts, weren't dictated to him. As we see in Scaduto's book, Bleefeld believed he was involved too... and certainly not because he was forced to write what he was told. There were things said that aren't written in any book that need to be told so they can at least be considered. What I have found is that those interested in this Case tend to overlook things they think are dead ends, however, the only way to know that for sure is to check it out. Even if it does turn out to be your conclusion I will guarentee that you learned something new & important along the way.
The Parker's papers....
Some small amounts exist with the family. What Andy has he shared with me. What Bill has is on his website for everyone to take a look at. It's a great site so if you haven't I strongly recommend it.
At the NJSP Archives there is an entire section on Parker (Wendel/Parker Collection). There's more to be found when combing through the Hoffman Collection (Main). There's still more here and there in the Hoffman "Special Correspondence Files." And there's still more In Hoffman's "General File" Collection. If that's not enough - then there's bit & pieces scattered throughout all of the other collection at the Archives.
It took me years to find everything, and its still clear there is much that isn't there.
Thanks Michael for the site. I've just started reading through the into. I've always wondered what did Wendel say that only the the kidnappers would have known. All accounts in my mind are vague in coming to that conclusion. We know about the story coming down the stairs as the exit and a screwdriver to open the window. Really though what was concrete that sets the suspicion on Wendel having any inside information on the kidnapping?
I am not sure what you are looking for. I would need a question about what you would consider a specific untruth as coming from someone.
Off the top of my head - the specifics about the Moore Family seeing the car. It's how Parker knew to go interview them. It was these little things, hints, and the idea of Parker being able to pick up on the actions of the individual.
There was a combination of things that led to Parker's "downfall" so to speak.
You would think there is more. I have plans to go over to NJ by the end of the month or early September. Also the rice notes. Are they accessible? Thanks Michael. (Gary)
The "rice paper" notes are...if you can find them. Where they are supposed to be is a note saying they went back to NY. But during the course of going through "everything" I found them in a place I didn't expect them to be. If you don't find them let me know and I will send you the FBI report I mentioned before.
I know this question was for Jack but if you want me to Gary I could look to see what I could find.
Going from memory.... I believe Paul Vetterle tesitified about the party - am I right. If so, then there's very little in the files aobut him but I do remember something.
I know I have a Cummings report, however, I don't have a file dedicated to him so that could be anywhere. I remember after reading report concerning the investigation that it was pretty much summed up well in the Summary Report.
Michael....just names I never followed up on mainly because I can't find anything else. Just wondering if this crossed anyone else. So many names, so many suspects, so many dead ends and tall tales nevertheless I found Cummings interesting.
The earliest suspicion was a local involvement to the case. Just going over some notes I came across LEWIS V. CUMMINGS. Not that he is a local but had worked at the NJ State Village for epileptics in Skillman NJ (3 mi from Hopewell) and other institutions in the Bronx and Westchester county. The FBI notes are startling.
Condon said he resembled the person to whom he gave the ransom money to. Interesting that he was described like that. Why not CJ or the man I talked to at the two cemeteries. Anyway if the FBI notes were ever substantiated he would have been a strong early suspect. The information in the FBI files book by Thomas Fensch has a detailed list why he was a suspect.
A handkerchief had been found near Mt Rose bearing the initials LC. Did you ever hear anything like that ?
Hello, I am a long time fan of this site, and amazed at the knowlege and dedication of its members. Lewis Cummings and Enrico Gerardi have always intresteted me. In 1931 Enrico seems to have lived near the Lindbergh family on 3 different occasions. Charles Schopfel rents his home to Enrico in the summer of 1931. Antonia Chowlewsky the "Pig Woman" says that a stranger moved in up the road from her July 1931. The stranger comes over one day and starts talking about someone "who didn't like the family" and might be "paid well". (FBI Files) Could this be Mr. Gerardi? According to the FBI Gerardi then moves to Rockland, Me. not far from North Haven were the baby is spending the summer with Betty and Grandma Morrow. I read somewhere that Betty and friend were walking in North Haven and a young man approximate age 19 came up to her and started talking to Betty, when asked how she knew him she said that she had met him at a dance. Charles Maran, Enricos' step-son would have been the same age, and not living too far away. Then of course Enrico is then arrested Jan 1934 for allegedly holding his wife prisoner in his home.
Lewis Cummings known forger, confessed murderer according to Dr. Condon resembles "John". Did Dr. Condon ever get a chance to id him? I just can't seem to let go of Cummings and Enrico Gerardi as hard as I try. I appreciate any of your thoughts on these two. Remember I'm a newbie so be kind
KJ: Welcome to the board. That's an awesome post out of the gate and certainly isn't coming from someone I'd call a "newbie."
The Police originally believed there was an inside connection as well as a local one. Ceradi was always on my short list of suspects.
I have file on the "Pig Woman" and Ceradi. I will see what I can find. Bear with me because sometimes I have reports which mention them that I filed elsewhere because of the other information within a specific report may contain more information about something else.
Gary: This is exactly what is going on with Cummings. I am having trouble finding his. I tried the Skillman Inves. and found a report written by Agent Leslie dated 8-31-34.
Cummings was engaged through the Charles O. C. Irwin Emplyment Agency, 101 West 38th St., New York City, at a salary of fifty-five dollars per month. Employed 10-3-28 thru 10-23-28. No address given. Description: 6 ft. 167lbs, blue eyes, light brown hair. Had a shrapnel would on the left arm and left hand between thumb and first finger.
Thank you that would be wonderful. I'm glad to hear Enrico is on your short list. I for one can't wait until you write your book. Does anyone know if she was ever able to be interviewed about the LKC? She seems to be normal until 1932 and then her life falls apart.
Thanks.... Still on Chapter 2 but I am excited to properly present the information. There's a ton of new stuff I want to share.
I don't think there's an official statement, but I know that she was spoken to by the NJSP on several occasions. Additionally, the Department of Labor Investigators took a special interest in her so there's their reports... There also seems to be an effort to somehow tie her in with one of the convicted Wycoff murderers but I didn't see that going anywhere....
Some seem to indicate, like Trooper Bornman, that she is mentally deficient. Others say she is much smarter then she appears. She points a finger at a lot of people.
The earliest report have her saying that Jesse Bush and his family were involved. She would later accuse Mr. Plump (Hochmuth's S-IN coincidentally) was involved. Another was Harry Cubler.
She had a criminal record, and was a "swindler" herself. There's a "confidential" report (unsigned) that says she indicated everyone but Cantanio, who by the way, is someone else I have always been interested in.
The police got her fingerprints, and checked out her tools in order to clear her of involvement.
I am still trying to find the source of the FBI information. It's probably a newspaper report because she did lodge, and act as a guide for them.
There is a report by Bornman which states that she claimed an "immediate neighbor" named Charles Bartlett & Archie Harrison were acting suspiciously and had dug a hole in woods. Bornmann investigated and found these guys were of good reputation and were just smoking hams.
Part of a letter mailed to Condon from Clara Souther (Feb 28, 1934):
I feel so strongly about one of Larry Rue's articles that I want to express my views, for in any mystery we can never tell where or how right may come in. It is Article No. 19, the story of the Ceradi family and their movement prior to the kidnaping. This article made me sit up and take notice -- not that the Ceradi family lived in Englewood, Hopewell, or Ridgefield Park, bu that they moved to North Haven, Maine at the time the Lindbergh child was there at the Morrows. Why N. Haven? Know that the authorities haven't answered that "why" satisfactorily to themselves......
......Perhaps you know the place? - "Summer people" and natives. It is not a fashionable place but it is an exclusive place.....
.....In the last years some New Yorkers have built there -- for instance, the Lamonts and the Dwight Morrows. Although people of wealth and social standing..... The children have their small sailboats and races. It is a "one-family" colony.....
....Now, into this community Mr. Rue says, comes the Ceradi family. For what? Unless he follows the sea I can see no answer. All the "men" employed by the summer people are natives or from Deer Island, all born, and bred in the "State o' Maine". Of course, Ceradi could say, "This is a fine country", but I just can not place a Ceradi in N. Haven, for they certainly are the proverbial down easters there. I cannot think anyone would try to make a kidnaping on an island -- so far from the main land -- one hour at least to Rockland. The only solution is that Ceradi may have been trying to make contacts with the Morrow household.
Last Edit: Aug 27, 2010 16:47:59 GMT -5 by Michael
I really enjoyed reading the articles on Parker. I really need to spend some time on this thread to get more familiar with Parker and the Wendel angle. I am posting the link to an article about Jafsie giving Ellis Parker some advice through his son Ellis Jr.
Condon tells Ellis Jr. to give his Dad the message that "Silence is Golden". I have a few questions about this:
1) Is it possible that Condon knew in advance that Parker Jr. would be getting his hair cut on that day, at that time, in that barber shop? Condon lives and gets his haircuts in the Bronx. Why go to that particular barber sho in New Jersey for a hair-cut?
2) Could Condon's message of "Silence is Golden" actually be a warning instead of "friendly advice"?
3) Who might have sent Condon there? Wilentz? Schwarzkopf? Lindbergh?
We know how things ended up for Parker because he didn't walk away from this crime.
Condon tells Ellis Jr. to give his Dad the message that "Silence is Golden". I have a few questions about this
1. I don't think so. I believe he was seeking out Parker Sr.
2. Certainly. I thought he was trying to explain the reasons behind his own actions though.
3. I think this was his personal mission - like the Mrs. Capone escapade.
The bottom line is your guess is as good as mine. My belief is that Condon was trying to do what he thought was best for Jafsie. I do believe looking into ALL aspects of this case is beneficial. I know there is so much information that it's human nature to omit/avoid where things have been concluded as "false" or "wrong." But re-examining these things turn up information that has been overlooked, or certain things that have been incorrectly concluded. "History" is NOT always right. For example, some "facts" that are in just about every book on this case never even happened, or, happened completely differently then what we've been told. I've had people tell me that certain things I've said were "at variance with the facts." I just have to laugh sometimes.....
Last Edit: Jun 18, 2013 17:06:40 GMT -5 by Michael
lotes: Has anyone ever done (or asked to do) a DNA test on the envelopes sent by the kidnapper (or extortionist)?
Sept 23, 2013 10:05:30 GMT -5
conkal49: I am researching The Willows and the priest that had information regarding Hauptmann and others involved in the LKC. Any information (other than what has been revealed in Jim Fisher's book) would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
Oct 3, 2013 10:18:15 GMT -5
Michael: Check out this thread: http://lindberghkidnap.proboards.com/thread/815
Oct 3, 2013 15:36:52 GMT -5
lotes: I know you posted it a long time ago but did you ever sell the poster listing the Lindbergh ransom notes? Tom Shaw
Oct 8, 2013 16:16:44 GMT -5
conkal49: I have been researching information on what my great uncle knew about some of the people involved in the LKC, specifically Hauptmann, Henckel, Calstrom, Fisch, and the "Willows". Rev. Michael J. Kallok was my dad's uncle.
Oct 8, 2013 18:59:17 GMT -5